'The Winds of Winter' Release Date, News & Updates: George R. R. Martin Explains Absence From San Diego Comic-Con 2016; Bestselling Author Remains Elusive About Sixth Novel's Progress

George R.R. Martin
George R.R. Martin as Guest of Honour during Archipelacon in Mariehamn, Åland. |

George R. R. Martin was left with no choice but to explain his absence from the San Diego Comic-Con 2016 after reports surfaced that he was spotted at the convention.

While the bestselling author gave an acceptable reason, he remained elusive about what fans have been clamoring for a long time – the release date of "The Winds of Winter," the sixth novel of the series "A Song of Ice and Fire" in which the popular TV show "Game of Thrones" is based upon.

It Was a Cosplayer, Not Martin

In the latest entry of his live journal, Martin said that he normally does not feel the need to talk about his whereabouts, however, he received reports that he was sighted at the Comic-Con. The 67-year-old novelist explained that as much as he would like to join the "Game of Thrones" cast and fans at the convention, he is in Sta. Fe, New Mexico to participate at the weekend multi-author book signing event at the Jean Cocteau Cinema.

"It's not me," Martin denied his alleged presence at the Comic-Con. "It's some other old fat guy in a Greek sailor's cap and pair of suspenders, maybe. Who may or may not be consciously cosplaying as me," he wrote.

Martin shared that although he never imagined that it would ever happen, he already got used to meeting people cosplaying as him. "And just to be clear, no, I do not disapprove of fans cosplaying as me... so long as they don't actually pretend to be me," the bestselling author stated.

What Happened to 'The Winds of Winter'?

Martin has clarified his alleged presence at the Comic-Con, however, he continues to leave his fans wondering about the release date of "The Winds of Winter." The Christian Post reported earlier that there were speculations that Martin will be announcing the sixth book's release date at the 74th World Science Convention in Kansas City on Aug. 17-21. However, the author has already shut down the theory in the comment section of his live blog.

According to the Independent, there were also speculations that Martin wanted to surprise fans by dropping "The Winds of Winter" and the seventh book "A Dream of Spring" simultaneously. Unfortunately, Martin's reputation as a slow writer makes the rumors doubtful.

It can be recalled that it has been five years already since "A Dance with Dragons," the fifth novel of "A Song of Ice and Fire" series, hit store shelves. The sixth season of "Game of Thrones" aired from April to June this year without a novel to base from. The seventh season of the top-rating TV series is set to return to HBO in summer 2017.

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